Commercial pet food companies offer us a wide variety of nutritionally balanced (meet AAFCO’s nutritional requirements or have passed the AAFCO or CVMA rigid feeding trials for growth, maintenance, gestation and lactation) convenient diets within the price range of most pet owners. These diets range in quality from grocery brands to super premium. There are diets for all sizes of puppies, and adults , senior dogs, arthritic dogs, athletic dogs, obese dogs. Your veterinarian carries a whole line of similar diets plus diets for specific health problems. Many of the “natural diets” are following the same path.

We are told these diets are best for your pets and we believe what we are told, even when our logic prompts us to question these claims. Advertisements tell us these diets are recommended by veterinarians and top dog breeders, some are even formulated by veterinarians.

We are told that home cooked diets similar to what we feed the rest of our family are severely deficient and not balanced in nutrients and will cause deficiencies. But is this not the food we are feeding to our growing children?

How many commercial pet food ingredients would you find in the produce section of the supermarket or at the farmer’s market? When these ingredients are used in food for human consumption, they can be found in the “junk food” section of the supermarket.

A list of vitamins and minerals is an indication that the primary formulation needed extensive supplementation or that these nutrients were lost during the processing of the by products or during the production of the diet. If these nutrients were still present and active in the primary ingredients then why is it necessary to add them?